Citizens help national preparedness
| 11.28.2005 | 09:19:15 | Views: 2675 | ID:
November 28 '05: Coloradans and others in the US are taking homeland security into their own hands, according to the Department of Homeland Security. Citizen Corps, a federal program begun in 2002 under an executive order, was designed to help American citizens understand and prepare their communities for response and recovery in the event of a large emergency or disaster.
The Associated Press was told by the Colorado Springs' Office of Emergency Management's Director Bret Waters, "There's a lot of interest and excitement about the program. People are wanting to know how to take care of themselves and the their families."A part of the Citizen Corps program, local preparedness programs include Neighborhood Watch, Volunteers in Police Service and Community Emergency Preparedness Response Team. Newer programs like Fire Corps and Medical Reserve Corps have also been formed, the AP reported. In other states like California and Texas, programs organizing and involving the population have helped people to stop the "worried well," the AP was told by Greg Chin, the director of California's Citizen Corps. Under the program, federal money is sent to the states and local governments, but then the money is managed by those local governments and not the federal government. "About 14,000 corps volunteers from 50 states mobilized after Hurricane Katrina," the AP reported. "In Alabama, they set up and staffed a shelter for 1,000 victims. In Texas, corps members helped the Red Cross at the Houston Astrodome, which housed thousands from New Orleans." For more information, visit the Citizen Corps website at www.citizencorps.gov
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